Thursday, January 7, 2016


Read this and work the exercises. Your characters will thank you! 

I've had the pleasure of attending Jan Morrill's workshops at several conferences and I'm delighted she has put together this book which is based on her presentations from the past five years. In it she suggests six methods of creative characterization she used when writing her historical novel The Red Kimono, a story of a small Japanese girl who is a victim of the Japanese Internment.  These methods are:
  • Interviewing
  • Describing photos and paintings
  • Writing letters
  • Writing from a different point of view
  • Accessing a character's inner child
  • Internalization
I've used them all and have discovered many things about my characters I'd never thought of before. The exercises are fun, thought provoking, and effective. Even if I do not use all the information I've gleaned from working the exercises, I certainly know my character better. 

Creative Characterization is a small book with big ideas. It's user friendly and economical. I recommend this book, you will not be disappointed. I certainly wasn't. 

Jan Morrill was raised in a multicultural and multi-religious family. Her mother, a Buddhist Japanese American, was an internee during World War II. Her father, A Southern Baptist redhead of Irish descent, retired from the Air Force.

Her award-winning historical fiction, The Red Kimono, as well as her short stories, poetry, and memoir essays reflect her rich cultural background.

While working on the sequel to The Red Kimono, Jan presents workshops on writing, as well as speaking on the history of the Japanese American internment.

For more information please visit her site:

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